Malawi national football team, the Flames, take on Tanzania’s Taifa Stars this afternoon in a strength-testing match set for Uhuru Stadium in Dar es Salaam.
The match is the 11th between the two sides since 2000.
Malawi has won two of the matches while Tanzania has won five. The other four matches ended in draws.
The last time the two sides clashed was at the 2017 Cosafa Cup in South Africa.
Tanzania stunned Malawi 2-0 in a match coach Ronny van Geneugden (RVG) used mostly Super League players.
This time, RVG has full arsenal. His squad has six foreign based players—goalkeeper Charles Swini, midfielders Frank Banda, John CJ Banda, Gerald Phiri Jnr, and Robert Ng’ambi and strikers Richard Mbulu and Gabadinho Mhango.
The coach is expected to blend the foreign-based players with locals Jabulani Linje, Stanley Sanudi, Yamikani Fodya, Miracle Gabeya, John Lanjesi, Brighton Munthali, Levison Maganizo, Fletcher Bandawe, Gomezgani Chirwa, Righteous Banda, Chikoti Chirwa and Dennis Chembezi.
Before departure for Tanzania on Thursday RVG said that he has confidence in the players he has picked for the task.
His counterpart, Shabani Mayanga has also named five foreign-based players in his squad.
Belgium-based captain Mbwana Ally Samatta (KRC Genk) is expected to lead the hosts alongside, Abdi Banda (Baroka FC, South Africa), Hamis Abdallah (Sony Sugar, Kenya), Abdul Hilal (Tusker, Kenya) and Portugal-based striker Morel Orgenes.
Football Association of Malawi general secretary Alfred Gunda said the international friendly will help the coach try some combinations as the Flames tune-up for the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Morocco in March next year.
Tanzania, on the other hand, are preparing for their Afcon qualifier against Uganda in March as well. n